Sports in the News
Women's Basketball Star Kim Smith Signs With Texas-El Paso
Pasadena City College sophomore guard Kim Smith, a starter on the 2009 women's basketball state champion team, signed her scholarship letter of intent with University of Texas-El Paso (UTEP) Monday.
Smith finished a phenomenal two-year career for the Lancers with 997 points, leaving her in the No. 4 spot on the college's all-time scoring list. The 5-foot-8, Chatsworth High product helped the school make history in '09 when her squad captured PCC's first-ever state team championship in women's sports.
She tied a PCC playoff record by scoring 35 points in the '09 semifinals v. Ventura. Her 23 free throws in that contest set a CCCAA state championship tournament record. Smith holds the college's free throw records for most free throws made and attempted in a season and career.
A two-time, All-South Coast Conference selection, Smith led the Lancers in scoring and assists as a sophomore, helping the team advance to the CCCAA championship tournament quarterfinals. She averaged 17.4 points and 3.3 assists this past season. In her two seasons at PCC, Smith aided the Lancers to achieve a 58-9 record, including two Southern California bracket titles.
With a 3.2 GPA, Smith now continues her college studies and athletic career at UTEP, a NCAA Division I university and a member of Conference USA. She will be playing for head coach Keitha Adams.
Smith talked about why she chose UTEP as her next destination.
"Before I took my visit there, I had a checklist that I made out for myself and UTEP hit all my important points," Smith said. "I get to live on a dorm on campus, and I'm going to major in journalism, but be able to take classes for both writing and broadcasting media. The coach there told me they want a player who will take it quick to the basket, and I'm that person."
Smith will play either as a point guard or shooting guard after performing both roles under PCC Head Coach Joe Peron.
"Coming to PCC really opened my eyes," Smith said. "I didn't have the grades to go right to a university, and I was fortunate to come here to play community college ball. I had to improve my game going up against bigger, faster and more talented players.
"Winning the state title here was a fantastic experience. After coming just short of winning a title in high school, to win the state title here in my first season, and it being the first in PCC women's sports, just made me feel a part of history. As a sophomore, I think I learned about patience, and a perspective about leadership on the floor."
Peron said of Smith, "Kim was certainly one of the best players we've had here, but even more so one of most coachable students I've had the pleasure of teaching. From a speed standpoint, I don't know if there was a faster player from point A to point B. She has a talent to slip through the defenses and get to the basket. Kim always could draw the foul, and get to the free throw line if nothing else. We will miss her."
[Photo--Signing Day--Kim Smith (hat) signs her scholarship letter with parents Renee and Jeffrey Smith to her left, PCC Dean of Kinesiology, Health & Athletics/Athletic Director Beverly Tate to her right, and PCC Head Coach Joe Peron (standing) at Hutto-Patterson Gymnasium Monday, image by Richard Quinton.]
Release Date: 04/20/10